HP Profit Rises as Notebook Sales Grow

Hewlett-Packard Co., the world's largest personal computer maker, issued a better-than-expected quarterly profit and outlook on Monday, driven by strong sales of notebook computers. HP also announced an $8 billion additional share buyback program, but market reaction was muted by uncertainty over how much the U.S. credit crisis will hurt technology demand in coming months. HP shares rose 1.4 percent in extended trading to $50.15.

The results came after International Business Machines Corp and Cisco Systems Inc. warned of weakness in orders from U.S. financial institutions, which are mired in mortgage-related losses. Chief Executive Mark Hurd told reporters on a conference call that HP saw a "fairly steady environment" in its fiscal fourth quarter, which ended on Oct. 31, helped by lower computer component prices. "We do not have a huge exposure to the financial services industry," Hurd said. "We saw no change in spending in financial services in the quarter."

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